Low point

Surveillance is not new, but technology has permitted surveillance in ways that are unimaginable, noted Supreme Court judge Sanjay Kishan Kaul in his separate judgment when the apex court declared privacy to be a fundamental right in August 2017. In words that may now seem prophetic, Kaul said, “Knowledge about a person gives a power … Read moreLow point

Casting the Net wide: on Kerala’s plan for free Internet roll-out

If things go as per plan, Kerala could have near-universal Internet access in a little over a year’s time. Last week’s nod by the State Cabinet for the Kerala Fibre Optic Network project clears the path for a Kerala-wide optical fibre network by December 2020. At ₹1,548 crore, it is, without doubt, an ambitious project. … Read moreCasting the Net wide: on Kerala’s plan for free Internet roll-out

The big bad bug

It lands on your cellphone with its giant wings flapping, penetrates the phone’s operating system, reads messages and emails, cracks passwords, tracks your location, and even accesses the mic and the camera. It is Pegasus, a dangerous spyware named after the winged horse in Greek mythology, and designed by the Israeli cyber-intelligence firm NSO Group … Read moreThe big bad bug

Tale pieces

Davinder Toor’s search for identity has involved buying a cannon. The bronze howitzer, assembled in Lahore in the 19th century, was used in the decisive Battle of Gujarat (1849) between the Sikh empire and the East India Company. Brought back as a trophy after the Sikhs were defeated, the cannon would have been pulled by … Read moreTale pieces

Pegasus misadventure: On WhatsApp snooping scandal

The Government’s reaction to messaging platform WhatsApp’s revelation that Indian journalists and human rights activists were among some 1,400 people globally spied upon using a surveillance technology developed by Israel-based NSO Group is inadequate and, more unfortunately, far from reassuring. Thursday’s disclosure by Facebook-owned WhatsApp, which is suing the Israeli company in a California federal … Read morePegasus misadventure: On WhatsApp snooping scandal

Faster, higher, stronger

Summer Olympics: 1948, 1952, 1956. Gold medals: Three. Shirt number: 13. Name: Balbir Singh Dosanjh. India’s oldest living Olympic hockey medallist (95) is regarded as one of the greatest centre forwards ever, and was captain of the Indian team for the 1956 Melbourne Olympics. He scored five goals in India’s 6-1 victory over the Netherlands … Read moreFaster, higher, stronger

In WhatsApp breach, follow the money trail

On October 30, multiple Indian media publications revealed that a spyware called Pegasus (made by an Israeli firm, NSO) was used to compromise phones of multiple activists, journalists and lawyers. The phones were reportedly compromised by using vulnerability in WhatsApp which allowed the Pegasus spyware software to be installed in a target’s phone by initiating … Read moreIn WhatsApp breach, follow the money trail

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